Earth Mother Goddesses by Sue Perryman
It's April, and in the Northern Hemisphere this means it's Springtime! The energies of the season to work with are: fertility, growth, renewal, rebirth, new life, transition, new beginnings and change
The 22nd April is also World Earth Day, when events such as tree planting and litter picking are held all over the world to encourage people and governments to become more environmentally aware and to respect and appreciate Mother Earth. As Pagans I feel it is something we should all get involved with, and most areas of the UK will have different events going on that you can join in with. If that’s not possible for you, have a think about what you could do to make a difference, even if it's taking a reusable cup to the coffee shop on your way to work, or turning your heating down a notch or two!
Spring is the perfect time for Pagans to work with and honour the Earth Mother Goddesses.
An Earth Mother Goddess is a goddess who represents, or is a personification of the earth, motherhood, nature, fertility, abundance, creation and destruction. She is the nurturing primal source of all life, Universal Mother and Cosmic Womb, and to her all things must return at the end of their days. She provides food and shelter to sustain all life, she is both the womb and the tomb and is sometimes described as Mother Earth or Mother Nature.
Call on the Earth Mother to bring growth and fertility to your gardens and local wild spaces. Dedicate seeds and bulbs to her before planting; create a mandala from flowers, leaves, herbs and stones in her name. Research ways to become more environmentally aware
Spend as much time as you can outside, connecting with nature, walking in woodlands and hills, breathing in the fresh air and just appreciating all that the earth gives us. If you haven't got a garden you could plant up some culinary herbs in pots for your kitchen or learn about native plants and trees. If you have any old packets of seeds you don’t want, try a bit of Guerrilla gardening and bring beauty to neglected waste land.
Below I have listed a few Earth Mother Goddesses, that you may want to research or work with this Spring.
Terra Mater: Also known as Tellus Mater. An early Roman Earth Mother Goddess of fertility who watched over marriage, childbirth and agriculture. Terra was often connected with Ceres and they shared several festivals throughout the year including Fordicidia, a festival of fertility and animal husbandry on April 15th and Sementivae in January, a sowing festival; she was also honoured at the Secular Games.
Gaia: The Greek primordial Earth Mother goddess. She was said to be the mother of all creation. The gods were descended from her union with Uranus, the sky god, the sea gods, from her union with Pontus and the giants, from her union with Tartarus (The Pit) and mankind, who were formed from her earthly flesh.
Nerthus: The Roman historian Tacitus wrote about this early German Earth Mother goddess. A sacred image of her was taken around the country in a covered chariot by priests, and everywhere she went there were celebrations and peace. She was associated with fertility, fecundity, sexuality, abundance, the harvest, wealth, creativity and passion.
Pachamama: Also known as Mama Pacha. To the Pre-Incan people, Pachamama is the earth personified in her many forms. She was honoured at planting and harvesting times. They believed that Pachamama embodied the mountains and fields and caused earthquakes when people failed to honour her; her name translates as 'Mother Universe'.
Papatuanuku: Also known as Papa, the Maori earth goddess who with her consort the sky god Ranginu or Rangi created six children: Tawhiri, god of weather, Rongo, god of crops, Tu, god of war, Tangaroa, god of the sea, Tane, god of forests and Huamia, god of plants. They also created the first humans, water and everything between the earth and the sky.
Coatlicue: In Aztec myth Coatlicue was the primordial earth goddess who gave birth to the moon, stars and Huitzilopochtil, the god of the Sun and war. She was seen as the creator and destroyer of the earth and mother of the gods and humans. The goddesses Toci, 'Our Grandmother' and Cihuacoatl, 'Snake Woman' patron of women who die in childbirth, were also seen as aspects of Coatlicue.
Asase Yaa: The Ashanti people of Ghana regard Asase Yaa as Mother Earth. She governs the fertility of the soil and sacrifices were made to her to ensure an abundant harvest. Asase Yaa has no temples, and is worshipped in the fields, her themes are death, truth, fertility, morality and the harvest.
The White Goddess.co.uk